Delta Showers are great products. Delta offers high-end, amazing looking Shower Systems, Tub and Shower Faucets, Shower Only Faucets, Diverters, Shower Control Handles, as well as many other Shower related fixtures. Delta Shower Faucets include a Lifetime Warranty on both the operation and the finish. They offer many different designs ranging from contemporary and modern to traditional Victorian.
Part of what makes Delta great is the wide range of options they offer. With many finishes and styles to choose from, you are sure to find the perfect Shower Fixture for your home. Using our more than 40 years of experience in the plumbing industry we have written this guide to teach you everything you ever wanted to know about Delta Showers. You will learn about the different components that make up a Shower and learn how purchase what you need to get yours up and running. You will learn about different functions offered by different Shower components and this will help you make an educated decision when you are ready to purchase.
This guide is designed to explain the difference between various Delta Shower Types, Shower Valves, and Shower Cartridges. After you have read this article, you will understand how to properly select the perfect Delta Shower for you!
When it comes to the specific function and installation requirements, things can get a little bit tricky with regards to installing a Shower. There is often confusion about the differences between the various Shower Valves, Shower Trim Kits, and Shower Cartridges offered by Delta. At FaucetList.com we have over 40 years' experience in the plumbing industry and we can help you figure out what you need. We have worked with every major brand as well as with many other less well known brands. Delta is a clear industry leader. Their products offer a ton of flexibility with regards to style and design. More importantly, they have actually manufactured their products to offer an incredible level of flexibility which can really benefit you. For years plumbers have pushed brands like Delta, not only because their products are extremely reliable, but also as the components are designed to be interchangeable, making them much easier to install and repair.
As a normal person, it's likely you have never really had to think about how a shower works until you have to go purchase one. There are some fairly simple things that seem very confusing at first but with a little explanation will all make perfect sense. Delta's website helps a bit but their information is scattered around and seems to be written for professionals like us rather than end users like you. They seem to assume you already know a lot about plumbing technology and after reading through their documentation we felt it seemed a bit confusing. The goal of this article will be to try and put things in layman's terms to the best of our ability. If anything is still confusing, make sure to Contact Us for additional help.
Tub/Shower Faucets typically contain two parts: The Trim Kit and the Valve. The Trim Kit is the part of the shower you see. It includes the Shower Handle to turn the water on and off, the Escutcheon Plate that covers the hole in the wall, the Shower Head, the Shower Arm, and the Flange. It can also include the tub spout if you are purchasing a Tub and Shower Combination Faucet. Delta Shower Faucet Trim Kits include the Shower Cartridge. Delta Trim Kits are arranged into different series based on the Cartridge they include. Monitor 14, Monitor 17, and Monitor 17T Series refer to differences in the Shower Cartridge included with the Trim Kit. We will be discussing the Cartridges more in detail later. Please refer to the image on the left to learn more about the components of a Shower Faucet Trim Kit.
The second part of a Shower Faucet is the Valve. Sometimes referred to as a rough-in Valve, the Shower Valve is the part that installs in the wall and connects to the actual hot and cold water lines. The Valve is where the water from the hot and cold water lines inside your wall is mixed. Once the water has been properly mixed to a warm temperature it is ready to spray out your Shower Head for comfortable use. View the picture on the right to learn about the most common Universal Delta Shower Multi-Choice Valve. In the plumbing industry manufacturers typically make their Valves proprietary. This means Delta Trim Kits only fit Delta Valves. A Delta Trim Kit cannot be used with a different brand's Valve and a Delta Valve cannot be used with a different brand's Trim Kit. You may not mix and match different manufacturers as the Valve and Trim Kit are specifically designed to only fit each other when made by the same company.
***Note that on a Shower Only installation the Tub Spout Outlet will be plugged.
Well it doesn't make much sense if you have a brand new construction project. If you are building a new home, you have nothing so obviously you need both the Shower Valve and Trim Kit. If you are doing an extensive remodel where you are ripping out the walls and tile etc. you also will likely be changing things in the wall anyway so it's not such a big deal for you to change the Valve. In this case, a Shower Valve and Trim Combination is what you need.
However, some people only want to change the look or function of their shower, but DO NOT want to rip out the tile and go into the wall. This is where purchasing the Trim Kit only makes sense. You don't have to pull out the inside Valve, all you need to do is change the Trim and it looks like a brand new shower! Buying a Trim Kit only works great if you ALREADY have a DELTA VALVE installed in the wall. You can save lots of money on parts and the labor needed to change them if you simply swap out the Trim Kit.
The reason for selling the Valve and Trim Kit separately is that it enables you to upgrade the look of your bathroom or change the function of your shower without having to undergo major renovations. Delta manufacturers their Shower Valves to be universal. This means you can simply remove the Trim Kit (which installs over the tile) and switch it out. This makes renovation work much faster and less expensive.
As long as you are ok sticking with the Delta brand, your universal Delta rough-in Valve will fit any Delta Trim Kit. As mentioned above, this is the reason that the valves and trims made by different companies are not compatible. They do it on purpose to lock you into their brand. They know that once you have the Valve installed in the wall it will be very difficult to change. Rather than ripping out the wall and changing everything, they know it will be much cheaper and easier to just change the Trim. Therefore you will purchase another product from them rather than from a competitor. Judgement of this business practice aside, this makes it important that you choose a good product made by a good company because for better or worse, you will be kind of stuck with that brand. Ordering cheap imported showers from a no-name brand can have some pretty large consequences down the road if you ever decide to upgrade/change your shower.
Remember, it's not just about style and finish. With one Delta Shower Valve you can install any of their Shower Faucet Trim Kits. You can choose from any Delta Collection. You can change from a Modern design to a Traditional one. You can choose any finish offered by Delta. You can mix and match freely. But more importantly still, Delta's Universal Valve also offers you the ability to change the actual function of your Shower. For example you can change a normal Shower to a Thermostatic Shower without having to change the valve. The same valve can be used for a Shower only Installation and a Tub Shower Combination Installation.
This is because with Delta Shower Valves it is the Trim Kit that determines the function, not the Valve. This is NOT true with every manufacturer and the flexibility offered by Delta is a great benefit.
The Delta Multichoice Universal Shower Valve's biggest benefit is it's flexibility. By installing the MultiChoice rough valve first, you then can decide what type of shower you want. Whether you want to control just the temperature or keep temperature and volume controls separate for maximum flexibility, it’s not a problem. If you want the security of a pressure-balance cartridge or the precise temperature control of a thermostatic cartridge, MultiChoice Universal makes it easy. And with numerous style options for all functionalities, getting what you want has never been so simple.
Although Delta valves are Universal, there is some confusion as they do offer several model numbers on their website. Typically the valve you want will be R10000-UNBX or R10000-UNWS. These are the most commonly used and work for 99% of people. To be thorough in this guide however, we will outline the other valves and why you might use them. They are all universal and all Delta Shower Trim Kits will fit every single one of these valves.
All Valves feature forged brass bodies and Back-to-Back installation capabilities. They can be tested with air (200PSI) or water (300PS) without valve using a supplied test cap. Square plastic guard allows for right angle cuts. For use with Single or Dual Function Trim Kits. 1/2" Outlets and connections. Note: No tub outlet in the HF model. You should use proper the fitting with each type (copper tubing, iron pipe, and pex fitting). Make sure to use proper tooling with crimping pex fitting and cold expansion pex models. IP indicates female 1/2" threaded connections. UN indicates universal type fitting and is 1/2" NPT male thread with 1/2" CWT female sweat. Lifetime warranty on parts. Delta Valves Comply with all low lead regulations. Complies with CSA B125.1 and ASME A112.18.1.
The image to the left shows where you can find the shower stops in the Valve. Stops are unnecessary in some installations but make a lot of sense for others. Basically stops allow you to shut off the water to that specific Shower Valve but leave the water on in the rest of the house. This means if you ever need to change your Shower Trim Kit or repair a problem with that Shower Valve you will not have to shut off the water to your entire home. The stops act as a shut-off for that specific fixture.
So if you have a single family home and shutting off the water for a few hours is no big deal, shower valve stops are basically unnecessary. If however you are installing your Delta Shower in a multi-family complex like an apartment building where it would be difficult to get the building water shut off, a Shower Valve with Stops can save you a lot of hassle.
Stops are a simple open and close valve operated by a standard screw driver. Turning them shuts off the flow of water to the Shower Valve, allowing you to detach the Trim Kit or switch out a leaky cartridge.
Once you have the Universal Valve you can select any Trim Kit. Delta's Universal Shower Valve can even be used as a base for a full Delta Shower System. Different functions you can use the Universal Valve for are Tub and Shower Faucet Combinations, Shower Only Faucets, and Shower Handle Controls.
Additionally you may want to consider incorporating a Diverter into your Shower Design. Diverters USE A DIFFERENT VALVE from normal Shower fixtures as their function is different. Diverter valves do not mix water like a normal Shower Valve. They diverter already mixed water take in from the normal valve and send it to the peripheral shower systems (eg. Showerheads, Handheld Showers, or Body Sprays. The diverter valves are however all compatible with each and every style of Delta Diverter. Diverters are primarily used for when you want more than one spray option for your shower. For more information see: How to Build a Custom Shower System. If you want a more simple and less expensive solution, read more about our Easy Install Shower Systems.
In addition to the different types of Showers discussed above, you also need to consider the Cartridge. Delta's universal Valve design requires that the cartridge take on a larger role. The Cartridge will even affect overall water output. The cartridge can assist in raising your Shower's water pressure. Delta also makes cartridges that allow you to control the temperature and volume output of water separately. Their most high-end cartridge is the Thermostatic cartridge (Tempassure) which automatically adjusts the water mixture to maintain precise temperature control.
There are 3 Cartridges offered by Delta. The Cartridge is INCLUDED WITH THE TRIM KIT. When selecting a trim kit, make sure to consider the cartridge that comes with it so you will fully understand the features offered.
First you have to understand that ultimately the roll of the cartridge is to allow you to turn on the water using the handle and to control the flow of water from the valve up to the Shower Head. The cartridge also controls the flow of water from the valve and out through the Shower Head. If you are putting together a Full Custom Shower System, it is recommended you choose a Trim Kit with a 17T Tempassure cartridge as these put out the most water. For normal use of just a Showerhead or a Tub and Shower combo, all the cartridges are fine, but there are some slight differences between them.
This item your standard normal cartridge. At 80 PSI it puts out 7.96 gallons of water per minute. This cartridge functions as a single control for temperature only. As you rotate the handle the water comes on and as you turn it counter-clockwise, the water gets warmer. You do not have independent control over the amount of water volume that comes out of your showerhead. Consistent temperature (+/- 3.6 degrees F) is achieved by balancing the pressure of both the hot and cold water. This cartridge is offered with all Monitor 13 and Monitor 14 Series Delta Tub/Showers.
This item adds another level of functionality to your Shower. This cartridge allows the user to control the temperature and volume of water independently. The temperature can be set in order to remain consistent shower after shower but can also be adjusted as desired. Constant temperature (+/- 3.6 degrees F) is achieved by balancing the pressures of both the hot and cold water. Dual function cartridges come in all Monitor 17 Series Delta Tub/Showers. This cartridges allows for water flow of 6.98 gallons per minute at 80 PSI.
These are the most high-end cartridges offered by Delta. They put out 8.53 gallons of water per minute at 80 PSI. The Thermostatic Shower Valve cartridge is Delta's newest innovation, designed to keep water temperature consistent (+/- 3 degrees F) by measuring and monitoring the temperature of the water and then automatically adjusted the water mix to maintain a more precise water temperature. This cartridge also offers separate temperature and volume control. The temperature can be set to remain constant shower after shower. It is easily adjustable if desired. Thermostatic cartridges come in all Tempassure 17T Series Delta tub/showers.
So after reading the descriptions above, you may be thinking that the second and third options on the list seem awfully similar. They are quite similar but the Tempassure technology definitely offers a more luxurious shower experience. As noted above, the 8.53 GPM of the Tempassure cartridge is quite a bit more than the 6.98 GPM of the standard Dual-Function. If you are creating a Custom Shower System and want to power several Shower Sprays off of one valve, the higher water pressure can make all the difference. For more, read our in-depth explanation of the difference between the Delta Monitor 17 Series and 17T TempAssure Shower Trim Cartridges.
Tempassure technology also keeps the water within a slightly stricter range - 3 degrees vs. 3.6 degrees. That may not seem like a lot but it is actually a 20% difference, making for a fairly decent bump in the accuracy of control. The Tempassure cartridge also features an adjustable high-temperature limit stop that when properly set helps ensure the handle cannot be turned to a position that is too hot for comfort. Because the Tempassure actually measures the temperature of the water, the handle limit stop will not need to be adjusted for seasonal ground water temperature changes.
When you are shopping for different cartridges, you need to pay attention to the series number of the Delta Shower Trim Kit. The Delta 1300 and 1400 Series Trim Kits include the single function cartridge. The Delta 1700 Series Trim Kits include the Dual-Function Cartridge. The 17T Series Trim Kits all come with the Dual-Function Thermostatic Valve Cartridge. Remember from before, ALL TRIM KITS USE THE SAME VALVE. This information should help illustrate just how many variations can be delivered from the same rough-in valve. This is a huge benefit to the Delta brand.
The point of the Monitor technology is that it prevents sudden and possibly unsafe changes in shower water temperature. In the old days, flushing a toilet or turning on the washing machine might change the water temperature if someone is taking a shower at the same time. Delta Monitor Faucets are designed to avert these problems.
Delta Monitor faucets feature pressure balance valves to keep water temperature in a safe +/- 3 degrees Fahrenheit range. This protects you from sudden changes in hot or cold water pressure. Monitor Faucets feature Anti-scald technology which prevents you from being burned by hot water should a change in water temperature occur. In fact, most local building codes these days require Showers to be Anti-scald in new home construction.
Monitor Faucets also feature an adjustable high-temperature limit stop that when properly set helps ensure the handle cannot be turned to a position that is too hot for comfort. This however may require seasonal adjustment unless you have a 17T series thermostatic cartridge trim kit. For more information on Delta cartridges read our guide to Delta 17 and 17T series Shower cartridges.
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